Wilfried Zaha has been frustrated by a lack of first-team opportunities at Manchester United since sealing a summer switch from Crystal Palace, and he is now widely expected to go out on loan for the remainder of the campaign to get some minutes under his belt.
Plenty of clubs are queuing up to take the talented wide-man on a short-term deal. But it remains to be seen where the 21-year-old will end up, with David Moyes carefully plotting the youngster's next move.
Any potential loan deal needs to be beneficial to United as well as the player, and the club are wary of sending their prodigy out to a club where he will fail to get enough game time.
With that in mind, we assess the five teams reportedly in for Zaha, and who would suit him best.
Libor Kozak's broken leg means the club are in desperate need of attacking reinforcements, and Zaha would certainly fit Paul Lambert's counter-attacking philosophy with his searing pace and tricky wing play.
One problem he may face is the competition out wide, with Gabby Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann the undisputed first-choice duo. Villa's real need is a central striker.
Believed to be leading the race for Zaha are Cardiff, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looking to capitalise on the strong connections he has in place at United and striking a deal for the sought-after talent.
Cardiff have various central midfield options but are lacking a true out-and-out winger, with Craig Noone perhaps the only individual to stake a claim for such a title. Zaha's speed and inventiveness could be crucial in providing a new dimension for Solskjaer's men.
Tony Pulis admitted this morning that the chase to sign the club's former star attraction was as good as over, saying: "We’ve spoken to David Moyes about Zaha and I don’t think he is too keen on him coming back to London."
It seems a shame, given various rumours about Zaha suffering from homesickness having been brought up in the capital. Palace are in need of a wide-man to supply the rejuvenated Marouane Chamakh and link up with the creative talents of Barry Bannan in the centre.
The Magpies are one of the supposed front-runners for Zaha's signature, but have also been linked with Remy Cabella at Montpellier and already possess far greater depth on the flanks than most others in the Premier League, with Hatem Ben Arfa often having to settle for a place on the subs' bench, while the likes of Sylvain Marveaux hardly get a look-in at present.
The fact Zaha would not be considered a definite starter would surely be of concern to Moyes, with Pardew often picking Yoan Gouffran and Moussa Sissoko for their defensive contributions also an ominous sign for Zaha, given his relative inexperience at this level.
Stoke's need for a wide-man is as tangible as Palace's, with the deliveries from wide positions central to utilising the likes of Peter Crouch and Kenwyne Jones in attack. Marko Arnautovic has been slightly disappointing since joining the club in the summer, while the impressive Oussama Assaidi looks in need of some support.
Matthew Etherington has, ironically, been linked with a move to Palace and it could well be that the former Tottenham and West Ham winger's departure paves the way for a move to the Potteries for Zaha.
image: © Tom Brogan